When one door opens…

2 08 2010

Well, I’m back!

It’s been an exhausting past couple months, but I’m ready and just about to start my next big adventure…being an AmeriCorps Vista member!

I have a placement in New Hampshire, and I’m super excited to have gotten my placement. I went on several interviews, three over the phone, four in person, and another one through email(Yes, an interview via email…it was weird). It seemed though, even though most people who apply for a Vista placement are able to find one, my journey just seemed to be never ending.

I applied for several placements in Wisconsin, so I could stay near my boyfriend, but all of them were swiped quickly and I had to venture towards New Hampshire, so I could live with my parents and save money. I had several sites contact me about placements only to end up getting an email saying they already filled the position. It was disheartening and getting to actually be quite annoying; none of these places had actually interviewed me and the contact I was making with them was minimal. It got even worse once I started doing interviews.

Now let’s go back, I actually interviewed with eight different places. The first one, the timing wasn’t going to work with starting and my returning back to New Hampshire. Also the fit wasn’t quite right. This was the email interview pretty much, slightly awkward and all. But I thought to myself, “There are ton of other places and I’m sure more openings will happen and I’ll get calls from other programs.” I did get called by another program, and it was a lot closer to my parents so I could have ended up commuting with my dad. I talked and tried setting up an interview in person, but they ended up filling the position prior hand. I was still in Wisconsin, so I wasn’t to worried.

Now fast forward to the end of May and early June. I had moved back home and my first week alone, I had two interviews and a third set up with a program that has a variety of different placement. My first interview went alright, and the program director had been emailing and calling me so often, I was sure that I would hear back from them by the end of the week. The second one that week was very rough, I didn’t get the right feel for the program. I heard back from them via email a week later saying I didn’t get the spot.  The following week I had a third interview with another program, and they got back to me a week later. I was super excited after this interview, I felt I had made a great impression and I had made a connection with the supervisor. When I found out I hadn’t gotten this position I was starting to panic, I hadn’t heard back yet from the first people I had interviewed with and I had no idea what I was going to do. In order for me to start with AmeriCorps in August, I needed a program to accept me before July 1st.

I had three more interviews after that, one more in person and two over the phone. The one in person was not going to work, I didn’t have the background needed for it. The other two were both for programs that had just gotten approved  as placements, so I was excited. Luckily I did get accepted by one of them, and took them up on the job immediately. I let the other people I interviewed with know I had chosen this group…I never did hear back from the first people I interviewed in person with, which was really disappointing to me.

I’m incredibly happy and lucky to have gotten this position. What have I learned? How to make an impression and continuing to hone my interviewing skills. I’ve also learned the cut throat-ness of competitiveness these programs. A lot more people are applying to do these volunteer programs and there are people with masters and doctorates going after these positions. Fewer undergrads are getting into Vista which is scaring me. I hope that I rock this out!

What have I learned? That no matter how many interviews you go on, doesn’t mean you’ll get a job, and that even if the only people who had offered me a job was a group I wasn’t interested in, I would still have taken it.




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